|Movie Title/Year and Brief Description, Including Great Quotes and Scenes|
The Road Warrior (1981, Aust.) (aka Mad Max 2)
Also Mad Max (1979)
Writer/director George Miller's imaginative, post-apocalyptic action sci-fi (western) film told about a burned-out, ex-cop named "Mad" Max (Mel Gibson in a star-making role). It was known its stark, naturalistic depiction of a post-apocalyptic future that nearly every film has imitated ever since. In this comic book-styled B-film, the road warrior wandered the barren, lawless highways of an Australian outback wasteland in his black interceptor along with his dog. Living only to survive while dealing with anarchic crazies and violent road gangs, his main mission in life was to acquire enough precious petrol to keep nomadic.
He agreed to help save a besieged, remote oil-producing colony (established as a small fuel depot at a refinery) of decent-living survivors from a crazed, marauding wasteland warlord, the evil Humungus (Kjell Nilsson) and his maniacal mohawk-wearing chief enforcer Wez (Vernon Wells), by promising to help the refugee community with a breakout drive for the coast in a tanker-truck in exchange for gas.
In the film's exhilarating chase finale, it was revealed that the tanker truck allegedly filled with refined petroleum fuel ("precious juice") that was driven by Max had been a decoy as a diversionary tactic. The entire film had the same formula as The Magnificent Seven (1960) or a Sergio Leone 'spaghetti western', with Gibson providing the Clint Eastwood "Man With No Name" legendary hero - or anti-hero role.
"You want to get out of here, you talk to me."
The non-stop, high-speed chase scene in the film's dazzling climax, with amazing stuntwork pitting Mad Max against punk-rock attackers.
This ribald, satirical, un-PC military comedy about the buffoonish armed services by director Ivan Reitman was a cross between Animal House (1978) and Buck Privates (1941) - a male version of Private Benjamin (1980) with Goldie Hawn, featuring slapstick comedy, crude jokes, and gratuitous nudity. Bill Murray starred as unemployed misfit recruit John Winger, who volunteered for the Army with ESL teacher/buddy Russell Ziskey (Harold Ramis) after losing his apartment, automobile and girlfriend.
He endured tough drill sergeant Sgt. Hulka (Warren Oates) in basic training at "Fort Arnold" (along with other recruits including John Candy as corpulent Dewey "Ox" Auchsburgher, and Judge Reinhold as drugged-out Elmo) and stuffy commandant Capt. Stillman (John Larroquette), while M.P. love interests were played by P.J. Soles (as Stella Hansen) and Sean Young (as Louise Cooper).
"Any of you guys call me Francis, and I'll kill ya."
"Chicks dig me because I rarely wear underwear and when I do, it's usually something unusual."
"I'm gonna teach every last one of you how to eat, sleep, walk, talk, shoot, s--t like a United States soldier!"
"Do Wah Diddy Diddy" marching cadence.
The scene of the recruits introducing themselves to their drill sergeant, the mud-wrestling scene with John Candy and six bikini-clad females, the scene of Stillman spying on the WACs shower room, the scene in which Harold Ramis' ESL class was taught English ("Do any of you know any English?" "Son of beach. Sheet") and to sing "Da Doo Run Run", and the improvised kitchen gadget flirtation scene ('the Aunt Jemima treatment") between Murray and P.J. Soles in the base commander's house.
Conan the Barbarian (1982)
Director John Milius' action-adventure, swords-and-sorcery fantasy film featured muscle-bound Arnold Schwarzenegger (in a star-making role after he had reigned as Mr. Universe and starred in Pumping Iron (1975)) as the vengeful and bitter title character Conan, in a tale filled with blood, sex, violence, and sword-fighting choreography. He sought revenge for the slaying of his parents when he was young by charismatic snake-cult leader Thulsa Doom (James Earl Jones).
On his journey, the orphaned Conan became a slave to the Wheel of Pain (a gigantic mill-grinder), a pit fighter gladiator, a thief, and ultimately a swordsman-for-hire. In the carnage-filled film, the bloodthirsty, brawny warrior joined forces with cunning thief/archer Subotai (Gerry Lopez) and pretty Amazonian warrioress-lover Valeria (Sandahl Bergman), Queen of the Thieves, to combat Doom's snake cult of Set and avenge his parents' death.
- "What is best in life?"
"Grant me one request. Grant me revenge! And if you do not listen, then to Hell with you!"
The opening scene of the destruction of the Cimmerian village including the death of Conan's father (William Smith) by armored and trained rottweilers and the slow-motion death of Conan's mother by beheading, and the death scene of Thulsa Doom by severing his head from his body and holding it out.
Writer/director Barry Levinson's debut film was a bitter-sweet, nostalgic, rites-of-passage tale of six male buddies in their twenties growing up in late 50s Baltimore and hanging out in the local diner at Fells Point - with many fast-paced, late night, often mindless guy-talk discussions (with overlapping dialogue, both scripted and improvisational). The ensemble comedy's tagline expressed the film's theme: "What they wanted most wasn't on the menu."
The six actors who appeared in the many scenes at the diner over a long weekend in this character study were many up-and-coming stars: Steve Guttenberg (as nervous fiancee Eddie Simmons), Mickey Rourke (as gambler and ladies man "Boogie" Sheftell), Kevin Bacon (as the irresponsible, troubled, rebellious and drunken rich kid Timothy Fenwick, Jr.), Timothy Daly (as Billy Howard on a break from college, with an unmarrying pregnant girlfriend), Daniel Stern (as the only married one, "Shrevie" Schreiber), and Paul Reiser (as annoying, wisecracking Modell).
An approaching marriage for Eddie brought the chauvinistic group together one last time at the diner to eat/drink, and to talk about sex, sports, and 45 rpm records (and argue about who was the best singer for making out, Johnny Mathis or Frank Sinatra). Their confusion was captured in this line by Fenwick: "Do you ever get the feeling that there's something going on that we don't know about?”
"Do you wanna bet that she goes for my pecker on a first date?"
"Every one of my records means something! The label, the producer, the year it was made ... When I listen to my records they take me back to certain points in my life, OK? Just don't touch my records, ever! ... "
"I'll hit you so hard, I'll kill your whole family."
The scene of a pre-nuptial 140 question trivia test (65 was passing) about the Baltimore Colts pro football team required by virginal momma's boy Eddie (Steve Guttenberg) for his off-screen fiancee Elyse just before the wedding.
The scene between a married couple - neglected and under-appreciated Beth (Ellen Barkin in her screen debut) and exasperated music-obsessed 'Shrevie' when he complained about her improper alphabetical-categorical filing of his treasured record collection.
And the popcorn date scene in which "Boogie" fooled his blonde date Carol Heathrow (Colette Blonigan) into touching his "pecker" when she reached for a handful of popcorn.
Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)
Female director Amy Heckerling's energetic, candid and unassumingly real high-school film, her directorial debut feature film, was the quintessential teen film of the 1980s. It included a number of stereotyped but realistic roles derived from screenwriter Cameron Crowe's (a former Rolling Stone writer) undercover study-exposé of L.A. high school life during 1982 at a San Diego HS:
"All I need are some tasty waves, a cool buzz, and I'm fine."
"When it comes down to making out, whenever possible put on side one of Led Zeppelin IV."
"Surfing's not a sport, it's a way of life. No hobby. It's a way of looking at that wave and saying, 'Hey bud, let's party! Ha, ha, ha.'"
The slow-motion sequence of the emergence of red-bikinied Linda (Phoebe Cates) from an outdoor swimming pool and the slow opening and shedding of her bathing suit top from the middle (a fantasy mental disrobing by self-pleasuring Brad (Judge Reinhold)) - often rated by males as the best nudity scene in any film.
First Blood (1982) (aka Rambo: First Blood)
Also, the other Rambo films, including Rambo: First Blood Part II (1985) and its sequel Rambo 3 (1988) and twenty years later Rambo (2008)
Sylvester Stallone starred in a series of testosterone-filled, jingoistic, war-oriented films, including this one as surviving ex-Vietnam Green Beret John Rambo. The Rambo character was a misfit, cartoonish, long-haired, self-righteous super-hero - a revenge-seeking, buffed up, brooding ex-Green Beret Vietnam veteran (of Special Operations Command) who went on a one-man killing spree. The traumatized war veteran went berserk using his guerrilla training after being mistreated and unfairly arrested in a small town in the Pacific Northwest by the small-town sheriff Will Teasle (Brian Dennehy).
He 'refought' the Vietnam War as a 'one-man army,' using VC bushwhacking techniques during his battle against a variety of enemies, including the sheriff, a posse, and hundreds of National Guardsmen. [The 1980s Reagan era helped to provide the perfect backdrop for the Rambo films, in which the title character refought the disastrous Vietnam War.]
"For me, civilian life is nothing! In the field, we had a code of honor: You watch my back, I watch yours. Back here, there's nothin'!...Back there, I could fly a gunship, I could drive a tank, I was in charge of million dollar equipment. Back here, I can't even hold a job parking cars!"
Ex-Green Beret Vietnam vet John Rambo's final impassioned, preachy speech to Green Beret Col. Samuel Trautman (Richard Crenna), his former commander, about his hostile, unjust reception as a returning Vietnam War Vet.
(chronological, by film title)
Intro | Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10
Part 11 | Part 12 | Part 13 | Part 14 | Part 15